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Nanna Vestergaard, Lasse Jørgensen Cehofski, Bent Honoré, Kristian Aasbjerg, Henrik Vorum; Animal Models Used to Simulate Retinal Artery Occlusion: A Comprehensive Review. Trans. Vis. Sci. Tech. 2019;8(4):23. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/tvst.8.4.23.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
To present an overview of animal models of retinal artery occlusion (RAO).
Through a systematic literature search in PubMed and Embase, papers describing methods of inducing RAO in animal models were included. The identified methodologic approaches were presented in a narrative synthesis and compared with RAO in humans.
In total, 83 papers reporting on 88 experiments were included. Six different species were used with rodents and monkeys being the most common, and a minority were performed using cats, dogs, rabbits, or pigs. The anatomy of pigs and monkeys resemble that of humans most closely. The two most frequently used methods were laser-induced occlusion or ligation of the arteries. Other methods included raised intraocular pressure, arterial clamping, administration of vasoconstricting agents, the use of an occluder, embolization, and endovascular approaches to induce occlusion. In general, occlusions lasted for only 30 to 90 minutes, often followed by reperfusion.
Although a broad range of methods have previously been used, they all have limitations. Preferably, the methods should imitate the human disease as closely as possible and avoid damaging other structures. Therefore, monkeys followed by pigs are to be preferred and ligation or clamping may be a suitable model in larger animals as there is a potential to isolate and occlude the retinal artery only. Being less invasive, laser-induced occlusion is another suitable approach.
This review aims at assisting researchers in deciding on the most ideal experimental setting, and thereby increase the translational value to human disease.
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